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World China Calls Pope’s Comments on Uighurs ‘Totally Groundless’

11:50  24 november  2020
11:50  24 november  2020 Source:   bloomberg.com

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© Reuters. Pope Francis celebrates a Mass as part of World Youth Day. By Philip Pullella. VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - In a new book, Pope Francis for the first time calls China ' s Muslim Uighurs a While the pope has spoken out before about the Rohingya who have fled Myanmar, and the killing of Yazidi

China blamed the U. S . for what Washington called a “dangerous intercept” of one of its spy planes.

(Bloomberg) -- China said comments made by Pope Francis calling ethnic Muslim Uighurs “persecuted” were baseless, amid heightened international scrutiny over its treatment of minority groups.

Pope Francis standing in front of a building: Pope Francis speaks at the Vatican on Nov. 8. © Photographer: TIZIANA FABI/AFP Pope Francis speaks at the Vatican on Nov. 8.

“Pope Francis’s remarks on Uighurs are totally groundless,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told a daily briefing in Beijing on Tuesday.

Pope Francis made the comments in a new book, “Let Us Dream: The Path to a Better Future,” Reuters reported. It marked the first time he has spoken out about the Uighurs after being urged for years by human rights watchers, Reuters said.

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Uighurs in China are among the most persecuted ethnic minority communities in the world. Religious leaders are condemning China , but Pope Francis remains

China denies the allegations in the report, calling them "baseless". The state is already facing widespread criticism for holding Uighurs in detention camps. It is believed about one million Uighur people have been detained over the past few years in what what the Chinese state defines as

Who Are the Uighurs and Why Is China Locking Them Up?: QuickTake

Zhao maintained that China’s government “has been protecting the ethic minorities’ rights in accordance with law,” as Beijing faces criticism from the U.S. and other western nations over its crackdown on Uighurs in the far west region of Xinjiang.

The United Nations has assessed that anywhere from tens of thousands to “upwards of 1 million” Uighurs have been detained in so-called “re-education” camps. China says that it is fighting separatism and religious extremism among the minority group.

The Vatican last month renewed a controversial agreement with China on bishop appointments, brushing aside pressure from U.S. Secretary of State Michael Pompeo who said the deal endangered the Catholic Church’s “moral authority.”

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©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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